Member preview


The long (abbreviated) story of the phrase that changed the modern political landscape

Credit: Trump

Did you think Donald Trump was the first person to claim his primary goal was to “Make America Great Again”? If yes, you must be a millennial, or younger..

Let me tell you a story. A story about making America great… Again.

Although trademarked by Donald Trump and used successfully for his own presidential campaign, before The Donald it was most often associated with Ronald Reagan during his 1980 presidential bid.

Reagan during his 1980 presidential campaign

In actuality Donald Trump did not copy Reagan’s phrase. He simplified it.

“Let’s make America great again” — Ronald Reagan
“Make America great again” — Donald Trump

Regardless of how you feel about Trump and the fact that his inspiration for the phrase comes from Ronald Reagan (a man who proved that an unconventional politician can rise to the top during Donald Trump’s most impressionable years) the phrase has obviously hit home for many generations of Americans.

Party bias’s aside, The Donald wasn’t the first one Reagan inspired to use the phrase in a successful presidential campaign. Just ask his 2016 Democratic competition’s husband when he had a successful run as top dog.

Clinton during his 1991 presidential campaign

In a time of political craziness the phrase has it’s own bit of unique interesting history which stands neutral in the nonstop political rivalry between the blue and the red. Although it seems unlikely for any Democratic presidential candidate to use the phrase in the near future, even if purely out of fear for appearing bipartisan, it is unlikely that this is the last iteration of the iconic phase.